2015 NWCA All-Star Classic Results & Thoughts
Last night I had the pleasure of watching the unofficial kick off to the 2015/16 wrestling season on ESPNU. I haven’t been able to find the ratings for this but I’m hoping they’ll experience a similar uptick as the NCAA viewership did last spring. For those that follow true-wrestling you know that we advocate for growth of the sport. Here’s my short commentary:
• I like the experimental takedown points. In my mind a takedown needs to be worth more than 2 escapes.
• I hate to break it to the traditionalists but the singlet is on its way out no matter how ugly you make it. Flo is on the right track at their Who’s #1 event with experimental uniforms; 1% of wrestlers practice in a singlet- why? Looks, fit and performance are just the tip of the iceberg. Football, baseball, soccer and basketball players all practice in a similar uniform that they play in.
• What is the goal of the classic #1 vs #2? To pit the best wrestlers against each other. If you can’t? Then pick exciting wrestlers and try to give non power-house schools some exposure. The NWCA had mixed results on this.
• Lastly I think the fewer rules a sport has the better. These refs did a nice job with new rules, position and reviews. They even stopped a lack of action and seemed to encourage the wrestlers to get busy.
125: Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State) dec. Zeke Moisey (West Virginia) 7-1. Nice match Tomasello is a beast. Can he wear down Megaludis like he did Moisey?
133: Rossi Bruno (Michigan) dec. Mason Beckman (Lehigh) 4-1, SV. When you’re putting together an All Star match you want to highlight the best qualities of wrestling. Cautious, non aggressvie wrestlers should be on the list. Beckman is a very good wrestler and had a great wrestle-back at as last year’s NCAA’s but he’s not aggressive and offensive.
141: Cody Brewer (Oklahoma) dec. Dean Heil (Oklahoma State) 13-12. Great match both guys getting after it. Brewer going up a weight for the challenge. This is what an All Star match is all about.
149: B.J. Clagon (Rider) dec. Alexander Richardson (Old Dominion) 9-6. Another All Star match that I like. Both guys with aggressive flurries right up to the final whistle.
157: Mitchell Minotti (Lehigh) FALL Cody Pack (South Dakota State) 7:45, SV. An exciting finish to an average match. It’s nice that SDSU got its first wrestler in the classic. Minotti has a range of explosive moves that he can hit on top ranked guys but unfortunately we didn’t get to see it last night. Lehigh needs a better strength & conditioning trainer. The most important part of this match was the pin with the wrestlers scrambling in the neutral position. Neutral position pins are missed so often that I can’ count them on one hand. These refs were in the correct position to see and call it, unlike many of their brethren. If we want to help our wrestlers to prep for senior level competition why not call back points from neutral as well.
165: Max Rohskopf (N.C. State) dec. Clark Glass (Oklahoma) 9-2
174: Zach Epperly (Virginia Tech) dec. Kyle Crutchmer (Oklahoma State) 2-1. Good wrestlers but the casual fan wants more action.
184: Blake Stauffer (Arizona State) dec. Nathaniel Brown (Lehigh) 4-1, SV. Again, it would have been nice to have more aggressive behavior from neutral position.
197: Conner Hartmann (Duke) dec. Max Huntley (Michigan) 8-1. Hartmann is a stud. imagine if he was in a tough room during college. He’s beaten the likes of Morgan McIntosh in the past. Is this his year?
285: Ty Walz (Virginia Tech) dec. Adam Coon (Michigan) 9-3. Ty Walz came out on fire and kept it up for the whole match. I think this put Coon off balance. My wife was startled by the amount of activity during this match. I love the active 285ers. Great way to end the event.
Some wrestlers that may have added to the excitement and exposure at their weight class or maybe they were banged up?
133lbs Kevin Devoy (Drexel)
165lbs Joey Davis Sr. Notre Dame DII, we had an NAIA wrestler last year why not D2 or 3?
197lbs J’Den Cox Missouri